How to Care for Curly Lipstick Plant (Aeschynanthus Radicans)
What is a Curly Lipstick Plant?
It’s easy to understand how Aeschynanthus radicans earned the nickname Lipstick Plant. When looking at it, you can see that it greatly resembles a bright, vibrant stick of lipstick. To say it catches the eye and pops out in most environments is definitely an understatement. With correct growing conditions and care, this easy-to-grow houseplant will delight interior areas for years to come with its vigorous growth and vivid blossoms.
The Curly Lipstick Plant is indigenous to the tropical and humid rain forests of Java and the Malay Peninsula, where the long, trailing vines grow and climb up trees.
It is a member of the Gesneriaceae family, which has over 150 distinct tropical plant species, including the Lipstick Plant.
Just people who live in frost-free zones will be able to cultivate a Lipstick Plant outside. Those living in a more moderate region, on the other hand, will not be disappointed since this blooming epiphyte thrives as an indoor houseplant when cultivated in its optimum circumstances.
It’s ideal for hanging baskets since the stems may grow to be two feet long or more, bringing a touch of the tropics within.
The Aeschynanthus radicans appear in a variety of “Rasta” shapes and are known by numerous distinct names. Don’t be shocked if you find this plant referred to as Twisted Lipstick Plant, Twister Lipstick Vine, or Basket Vine at the shop.
True, there are various variations of the Lipstick Plant, and here are a few of the most popular ones:
- Aeschynanthus radicans ‘Cassiopeia’: flowers begin as purple buds with flat dark green leaves
- Aeschynanthus radicans ‘Variegata’: bright tiny red flowers along with flat light green leaves
- Aeschynanthus radicans ‘Curly’: dark green curly leaves
- Aeschynanthus radicans ‘Mona Lisa’: flowers are red-orange and dark green leaves
- Aeschynanthus radicans ‘Purple Star’: red flowers with violet blotches with lush dark green leaves
- Aeschynanthus radicans ‘Rasta’: dark red flowers, leaves that curl and twist in on themselves with very dense vines
Environment & Temperature
For good blossoming, air and soil temperatures must be between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit (21-27 degrees Celsius). There will be some blossoming at 65 degrees Fahrenheit (18 degrees Celsius), but it will be limited. At 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius), you put your plant at risk of chilling, which causes dark red leaves.
- Mist the Lipstick Plant several times each week with a spray bottle filled with room temperature water. If your Lipstick Plant is growing in a conventional container rather than a hanging basket, fill a tray with tiny stones and place the pot on top. When you water the Lipstick Plant, the water flows from the pot into the tray, and as the water evaporates, it provides humidity around the plant.
- You may grow the Lipstick Plant in your bathroom if the light conditions are suitable for optimum development and flowering. The usage of water within the room on a daily basis generates a humid atmosphere for the plant.
- To maintain adequate humidity around the Lipstick Plant, avoid placing it near a heating or cooling vent that dries the air.
Because Curly Lipstick Plants are native to tropical rainforests with persistently high humidity levels, it is critical that you reproduce the humid conditions inside. It is simple to create humidity for an indoor plant, and you have numerous alternatives for fulfilling the demands of your Lipstick Plant for healthy development.
Watering your Curly Lipstick Plant
Allowing the top quarter of the soil to dry before watering your Lipstick Plant is the best way to ensure appropriate hydration. In fact, waiting until the top layer of the soil is dry increases blossoming. Furthermore, whether the plant is in its growth or dormant season influences the frequency of water treatments.
Spring through summer: During this busy growth season, you will need to water once a week on average.
Fall to Winter: Because the Lipstick Plant’s development slows throughout the colder months of the year, it needs less water. You will most likely only have to water every two or three weeks.
Pressing your finger into the dirt and feeling the top quarter for dryness is a simple approach to assess the soil’s moisture level. Regularly water until water drains out of the container’s bottom drain holes.
Withered leaves indicate that the plant is not receiving enough water. Overwatering causes the plant’s leaves to lose their gleaming green tint. It is preferable for the plant’s health to skip watering than to apply too much water on a frequent basis.
When it concerns indoor plants, one of the most difficult things to do right is watering. It is by far the most prevalent source of issues.
Pruning your Curly Lipstick Plant
Pruning back the long stems of your Lipstick Plant, approximately a third, will encourage bushier growth. This prevents the plant from growing leggy and straggly. Pruning should be done after the flowering period has ended.
Furthermore, since flowers grow at the leaf tips, trimming will result in additional blossoms for you to enjoy. A pair of scissors or hand pruners will suffice, and be sure to cut just above a leaf node.
Always keep the blades of your pruning tools clean to avoid spreading illness to your Lipstick Plant. The blades may be cleaned by wiping them with rubbing alcohol.
It is essential to plant the Lipstick Plant in an indoor area that receives strong indirect light to ensure the optimum bloom production. However, do not position it in an area where the plant will be exposed to direct sunlight, or the leaves may burn.
If a Lipstick Plant isn’t fully blooming and the stems seem long and scraggly, it’s most likely because it’s not getting enough light. A change in your lighting approach will be needed to keep your plant alive.
If you want to give your Lipstick Plant a rest from indoor growing once the weather warms up in the spring, you may place it outdoors in a somewhat shaded spot. But be warned, the outdoors can be very challenging for a Curly Lipstick Plant. The sun’s direct rays are stronger outside than when they are filtered by a window going in, so don’t set it in a too bright area or you’ll end up with cooked leaves.
Soil & Fertilizer
Curly Lipstick Plants thrive in well-aerated soil. Using a liquid fertilizer is an excellent option, but be sure to keep the soil wet. As part of the fertilization procedure, add a little quantity of vitamins to the potting soil.
Repotting Your Curly Lipstick Plant
The only time you’ll need to repot your Lipstick Plant is if it’s outgrown its present container and the roots are overflowing. Use a container that is one size bigger than the current one, and repotting is best done in the spring and summer when your Aeschynanthus is actively developing.
Fill the new container approximately a fourth full with a healthy, lightweight potting mix. Make sure that it’s a mix that drains well. Water the soil to aid in its settlement. Verify that the container has water drainage at the bottom the container.
Remove the Lipstick Plant from its current container with care and examine the roots for wrapping. If necessary, gently peel any wrapped roots away.
Place the Curly Lipstick Plant in the container, adding additional soil as needed to keep it at the same height it currently is in its first pot. You don’t want to plant too deeply or you’ll have rot issues.
Fill the remaining space in the container with dirt, straightening it out everywhere around the Curly Lipstick Plant.
Water the container once more until water flows out of the bottom drainage hole. Return the Lipstick Plant to its old indoor location.
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The Curly Lipstick Plant is a wonderfully vibrant, bright, and unique plant that comes in multiple varieties and looks great no matter which one you buy.
There are many things to consider and remember when you are tending to a Curly Lipstick Plant, such as the humidity it needs and the best ways to water and repot it. However, growing this plant is actually relatively easy and can add a lot of bright color to your home.
Do you want a Curly Lipstick Plant or something like it? If so, you should visit our Plant Shop and find the perfect fit for your home. Or you can find a special planter that is ideal for your newest home addition.